MassDEP study finds positive results to commercial food waste ban

The report finds the ban has created economic growth with jobs and new business opportunities.

BOSTON, Mass. (WWLP) – The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) has released a report that found the Massachusetts Commercial Food Waste Ban has created more than 900 jobs and $175 million in economic activity across the Commonwealth during the first two years of it’s inception.

MassDEP implemented the plan in 2014. It is the nation’s first food waste and organics ban.  It requires any commercial organization (hospitals, schools, restaurants, grocery stores, etc) that disposes of one ton or more a week of food waste to recycle and reuse it for such things as composting, animal feed operations, or use it in an anaerobic digestion facility that produces renewable energy.

ICF International conducted the study.  They compared jobs and economic activity among food waste haulers; composting, anaerobic digestion, and animal feed operations; and food rescue organizations before and after the October 1, 2014 implementation of the ban.

The report finds that the success of the ban has created opportunities for new businesses, and expansion for current businesses involved in food waste reduction and reuse.  The state hopes to continue building on the progress with more initiatives through the MassDEP’s RecyclingWorks in Massachusetts program.

Read the MassDEP report on the Massachusetts Commercial Food Waste Ban Economic Impact Analysis.